Tuesday, June 19, 2018

At 20 Years Old, "Mulan" Still Brings Honor To Us All

Scene from Mulan
"This is what you give me to work with? Well honey, I've seen worse."

So goes the opening line to Disney's 1998 film Mulan, which over the course of its opening song deconstructed the idea of what their franchise's "Disney Princess" could be. Through a sense of irony, a discomforted tomboy named Mulan prepares for a meeting to be judged on her looks and skills. There is no care for what she actually thinks, just that she follows tradition and bring "Honor to Us All." Over the next 20 years, Disney has done plenty to create female characters that are strong, independent, and break gender stereotypes in ways that have regenerated the studio's relevance. However, it was with Mulan that they created something special, something that not only showed that a woman could do a man's job, but that gender tropes go both ways. It's important to see your own reflection, your true identity, staring straight back at you. Disney may have harped on this matter several times, but rarely with the clarity and perfection as that of their fiercest, most exciting movie that they've ever released. 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Theory Thursday: "Tomorrowland" (2015) is Underrated

Scene from Tomorrowland
Welcome to a weekly column called Theory Thursdays, which will be released every Thursday and discuss my "controversial opinion" related to something relative to the week of release. Sometimes it will be birthdays while others is current events or a new film release. Whatever the case may be, this is a personal defense for why I disagree with the general opinion and hope to convince you of the same. While I don't expect you to be on my side, I do hope for a rational argument. After all, film is a subjective medium and this is merely just a theory that can be proven either way. 

Monday, June 11, 2018

Legitimate Theater: Bonus #4. The Band's Visit (2018)

The Band's Visit
Welcome to Legitimate Theater: a column dedicated to movie-based stage musicals. The goal of this series is to explore those stories that originated in films and eventually worked their way onto Broadway and beyond. By the end of each entry, there will hopefully be a better understanding of this odd but rampant trend in modern entertainment. Are these stories really worth telling through song and dance? How can it even compare to the technical prowess of a camera and seamless editing? Join me on this quest as I explore the highs and lows of this trend on the third Wednesday of every month and hopefully answer what makes this Legitimate Theater.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Composing Greatness: #43. John Williams - "The Adventures of Tintin" (2011)

Scene from The Adventures of Tintin
Welcome to Composing Greatness: a column dedicated to exploring the work of film composers. This will specifically focus on the films that earned them Oscar nominations while exploring what makes it so special. This will be broken down into a look at the overall style, interesting moments within the composition, and what made the score worth nominating in the first place. This will also include various subcategories where I will rank the themes of each film along with any time that the composer actually wins. This is a column meant to explore a side of film that doesn't get enough credit while hopefully introducing audiences to an enriched view of more prolific composers' work. This will only cover scores/songs that are compiled in an easily accessible format (so no extended scores will be considered). Join me every Sunday as I cover these talents that if you don't know by name, you recognize by sound.